While Bush has done his part to erode our fundamental right to justice and liberty, he still hasn't been able to cut us off from our most basic freedoms.
Which is nice.
Turns out the Founding Fathers were like muscle-bound superheroes who, using their most excellent superpowers, managed to forge a magical Bill of Rights that -- incredibly -- has withstood constant assault for over 200 years.
Hugo Chavez, on the other hand, has proved that he is much more capable of destroying those elemental freedoms. He is like one of those X-Men who lives on the fine line between good and evil before totally succumbing to the darkness.
Now, I can barely remember to tie my shoes let alone have an informed opinion about international relations, but this video and the facts behind provoked a great "ah-ha" moment for me, one that crystallized what sort of a totalitarian leader Chavez has become.
The video shows the final broadcast of a TV network being shut down by Chavez and it is worth watching for the incredibly potent imagery the anchors chose to symbolize the government's actions.
"In this video, you can see the strange and sad way that the news program on RCTV shut down this past Friday, after Venezuela's president arbitrarily decided to close it.
Each worker at the TV station, hundreds of people whose jobs depend on this network which has been critical of Chavez, will be unemployed tomorrow.
The station closes Monday May 28th thanks to a political decision through which Chavez seeks to gain total control of the basic freedoms of the country's citizens.
Here's a Reuters articleabout the TV shutdown by Chavez. It will be replaced by a state-run channel 'promoting President Hugo Chavez's self-proclaimed socialist revolution in a move widely criticized as a threat to democracy.'"
I have to admit that I was pretty fooled by Chavez. He looks like a big teddy bear, Bush hates him, and he talks about helping the working classes. All good in my book. Until you remember that Stalin kind of looked like a teddy bear too.
I'm not going to get all Christopher Hitchens on you and start agitating for an all-out invasion, but we need some sort of collective action against Chavez's government, an action everyone can participate in; people who care about freedom of the press, people who want to stop totalitarianism, conservatives, progressives, everyone.
Thanks to tools like YouTube, the world is truly is watching. The question is, now what do we do?